The second half of the first series of this BBC drama which tells the story of ambitious cook Louisa Leyton and her upper class lover and is set against the backdrop of Edwardian London. Rich man of the moment Marcus Carrington arrives at the hotel and charms everyone off their feet. Louisa trusts his financial acumen, confident that he will make their fortune, but troubled times are ahead when the hotel comes under investigation for immoral practices. Louisa is not a supporter of the suffragette movement until a chance encounter causes her to reconsider. Charlie has to smooth over relations between the hotel and the local Sailing Club, and the death of the King heralds a new era.
From the golden age of Masterpiece Theatre comes this beloved 1976 British miniseries by the creators of Upstairs, Downstairs.
Gemma Jones gives a performance for the ages in this rags-to-riches saga that charts the ascendancy of the indomitable Louisa Trotter, who rose from scullery maid to become "the finest cook in London" and Edwardian society's premier hostess. Inspired by the true story of Rosa Lewis, who held court at her renowned Cavendish Hotel, The Duchess of Duke Street
is the video equivalent of a good read. Immerse yourself in this lavishly mounted BBC production that impeccably re-creates a bygone era at the turn of the century and captivates viewers with the tragedies and triumphs of Louisa's story, which includes an ill-fated affair with the Prince of Wales, an unhappy marriage, and struggles with bankruptcy and ill health. But Louisa, Cockney accent intact, prevails as the reigning mistress of Hotel Bentinck. --Donald Liebenson